Microsoft Corp on Tuesday announced a new round of technologies aimed at making its cloud computing services work in data centers it does not own – including the cloud data centers of its rivals.
The strategy, Microsoft executives and analysts say, has been key to the company’s rise in the cloud computing infrastructure market, which research firm Gartner estimates hit $64.3 billion and where Microsoft is second only to market leader Amazon.com’s Amazon Web Services.
Microsoft last week said revenue from Azure, its flagship cloud offering, grew 48%, results that helped it overtake Apple Inc as the world’s most valuable publicly traded company.
Microsoft’s strategy has involved constructing its most lucrative cloud software services, such as database tools, so that they can run inside its own data centers, those owned by customers or even those of rivals like Amazon.
Microsoft’s cloud and artificial intelligence chief Scott Guthrie told Reuters that the move has persuaded some customers to use its services when they cannot always use Microsoft’s data centers.